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  1. What is the CMCP's mandate?
  2. What are the CMCP's criteria for acquiring works for the collection?
  3. How do you submit works to the CMCP?
  4. What is contemporary photography?
  5. Does the CMCP have a collection of photographic equipment?



1 - What is the CMCP's mandate?

The CMCP's mandate is to collect, interpret and disseminate the best of both documentary and art photography produced by contemporary Canadian artists. Its holdings include over 160,000 photographs, photo-based works, negatives and transparencies. The collection includes materials from the Still Photography Division of the National Film Board of Canada from 1962 to 1985 as well as acquisitions made by the museum since its founding in 1985. Works in the collection are exhibited in downtown Ottawa at One Rideau Canal, circulated nationally and internationally through the travelling exhibitions program and lent to other institutions.

The scope of the CMCP's activities - collecting, publishing, organizing exhibitions, travelling exhibitions and educational programs - allows it to play a central role in fostering the efforts and development of photography in Canada.



2 - What are the CMCP's criteria for acquiring works for the collection?

The Canadian Museum of Contemporary Photography acquires work by contemporary Canadian photographers, that represents photographic production in two complementary areas: the photograph as an art form; and as a social document. In developing the collection, the CMCP seeks to represent significant movements and individuals in the history of Canadian photography from the collections inception in 1939 to the present.

The CMCP collects:
  • the work of Canadians and long-term residents of Canada (submissions from non-Canadians living outside the country are not reviewed).
  • photo-based media (this includes all traditional colour, black and white, and non-silver prints; ink-jet prints; photo-assemblages; and any work employing photographic technology)

Recommendations for acquisition based on aesthetic quality situate the work within the artist's production and in light of current theory and practice. Recommendations based on documentary value will emphasize the informed nature of the work as well as its integrity and social relevance.

Gifts from photographers and third parties are welcome. They are subject to the same evaluation process as acquisitions.



3 - How do you submit works to the CMCP?

Photographers or art dealers submitting works for acquisition or exhibition consideration should include the following:
  • a maximum of 40 select images (either copy slides, photographic or ink jet work prints, or CDs with image files).
  • list of titles, including medium, dimensions, and suggested price
  • artist's statement
  • copies of reviews, other publications, etc.
  • address including phone, fax and e-mail

Submissions made electronically must include the above information. Upon request curators will endeavor to view websites but due to the number of requests may not provide a response.

Please do not send exhibition quality prints or original transparencies. When sending submissions please label clearly and ensure that the materials are well packed in order to prevent damage during shipping. CMCP will not be responsible for items lost or damaged in the mail.

CMCP keeps written material in its biographical files; all images will be returned by mail unless other shipping arrangements are made.

Submissions are normally held for three months. The Registrar acknowledges all submissions in writing and arranges for their return. A curator will respond to the submission, but cannot give a detailed critique of the submitted work.



4 - What is contemporary photography?

Most of the photographs in the CMCP collection date from the 1960s to the present. The main focus of the museum's collection and exhibition activity is on work by Canadian photographers produced during the past decade. As time passes, the collection naturally becomes a historic collection. Occasionally, attention is given to these past works in presenting exhibitions that reflect upon the history of photography, on photographic practice in Canada, or on the work of an individual photographer.



5 - Does the CMCP have a collection of photographic equipment?

No there is no photographic equipment in the CMCP's collection.



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